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It’s back! The New Bedford Book Festival returns to Groundwork! in October

FB-header-GWMark Saturday, October 15 and Sunday, October 16 on your calendars. That’s when the New Bedford Book Festival sets up shop at Groundwork! from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. each day for its Fall edition.

The first-ever New Bedford Book Festival happened this past March, 2016 at Groundwork! It represented something more than a new festival in the city. It was the result of a successful collaboration between people and place at the co-working facility. It established a wonderful working relationship between myself and Sarah Athanas and Dena Haden – the founders of Groundwork! While also gathering over 40 authors and their books in the city – and drawing hundreds to 1213 Purchase Street.

Before the New Bedford Book Festival, the three of us strongly supported each other in our many endeavors. Sarah and Dena hosted a special meeting of the New Bedford Open Studios steering committee I co-chaired last year to explore new marketing options. Dena is also a member of the organization as an artist. Of course, I lent a hand or good word whenever possible to anything the two were doing at Groundwork! – before they asked me to come aboard officially to contribute to this blog.

That’s because after first experiencing this unique place, I quickly dubbed it the Center of Gravity for the creative and entrepreneurial class in the greater New Bedford area and loved everything they were doing here – as did so many others. We still do!

The first-ever New Bedford Book Festival cemented our common bond. We put into practice the theory of creative collaboration and were rewarded by a stunning outpouring of support for our efforts. So stunning that before the first book festival was even over we realized that we had to turn the event into a two-day, twice a year celebration of books to accommodate the waiting list of authors who wanted to participate but couldn’t because we sold out of available table space for them.

We’re pleased to bring those very authors to you plus some returning favorites this October for the Fall New Bedford Book Festival.

Once again, over 40 writers from throughout the city and region, from nearby Rhode Island and Boston, will come to Groundwork! to present their books to the public during this free event. You can begin reading about some of them them today at this link and follow the book festival on Facebook here to discover more in the weeks ahead.

Some other special features are returning for the Fall New Bedford Book Festival, too. One of my favorite writers at the daily The Standard-Times newspaper in New Bedford, BookLovers columnist Lauren Daley will again make an appearance for a Question & Answer hour with readers on Sunday, Oct. 16 beginning at 2:00 p.m.

Once again, the authors will read from their works throughout the festival in the reading room.

And, the delicious Destination Soups will be back in the Groundwork! kitchen with signature soups, grilled cheese sandwiches and more so patrons can linger at Groundwork! all afternoon on either Saturday or Sunday – or both days. Hey – it’s a free event and you’re invited!

A new feature this time around will be a special audio/visual installation by author/publisher Nick LeBlanc of Domesticated Primate and artist Meaggsy Bogues in Groundwork!’s Green Shuttle room. Also, the Fall Bookfest will have a dedicated children’s books area full of some imaginative writers and artists.

The first-ever New Bedford Book Festival was a groundbreaking achievement for us all, and we were so happy to share it with hundreds of guests for the weekend. Join us again for this free, open to the public event on Saturday, Oct. 15 and Sunday, Oct. 16 for another first: The first of many sequels to a creative collaboration that’s only just getting started among all of us here at Groundwork!

Steven Froias